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Sunderland v Lincoln City - Sky Bet League One Play-off Semi Final 2nd Leg

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Fan Letters: “I think the recruitment team has let Johnson down”

The RR readers discuss our current squad, recruitment and the lack of communication from the club regarding the status of season cards! Email us with your views:

Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

When Norwich were promoted two years ago, Stuart Webber recently came out and said he sent Daniel Farke into war without any weapons. However, this season he’s armed him with guns, grenades and he will probably buy him a tank before the windows done.

Currently, I feel like we are Norwich of two years ago and because of that I have sympathy for Lee Johnson. When the season ended if you said to him you will be on the verge of selling Bailey Wright, and be stuck with Tom Flanagan and a 17-year-old, who does look good, and that’s it for your central defenders, he wouldn’t be happy.

Add to that zero full-backs and we are sending Johnson into a massive season ahead unprepared with our worst squad since we’ve been down here. and I don’t think you can really argue that. We still (at the time of writing) have deadwood in Grigg, O’Brien, Burge, Wright and Flanagan.

While I don’t think Johnson is a great coach, you have to feel for him, and currently I think the recruitment team has let him down. Whichever way you sugar coat it we have one capable striker (Stewart), three wingers (McGeady, an inconsistent Gooch and a young Diamond).

For me that’s simply not good enough.

If people think it’s toxic now, then just wait until a few games in after some rocky results and for me you cant blame Johnson 100%. He has been sent into a season with a squad not capable of challenging for promotion, unlike what ross had, and I also think Parkinson had a better all round squad than this.

However, who will get in the neck for the fans and club if it goes wrong? Johnson.


Ed’s Note [Chris]: Lee Johnson has started to make it clear in his post-match comments in pre-season that he needs more. It doesn’t take a genius to know that he’s right. We still don’t have any recognised senior full-backs at the time of writing and there are other positions that clearly need attention.

However, after years of knee-jerk signings and plugging gaps with the likes of Danny Graham I’m desperate to get it right in terms of recruitment. It’s been our Achilles’ heel for at least a decade and if them taking their time means we get it right then I’m wiling to reserve judgement until the end of the window on August 31st.

It’s a long old window ahead of a long season and although I’d have preferred to have been ready for the visit of Wigan on the 7th August, but we still have four weeks to get it right.

Lincoln City v Sunderland - Sky Bet League One Play-off Semi Final 1st Leg
Tom Flanagan
Photo by Chris Vaughan - CameraSport via Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

I hijacked the club’s post (today) about streaming passes to ask where the season cards are. It has drawn a lot of responses from fans (not the club!) saying that the cards have been delayed at the printers.

That’s all I needed to know - but why the club couldn’t just add a post to the front page of the website to say that is beyond me. There’s still a huge amount of work needed to make our club actually fan-focused.

Mike Ellison

Ed’s Note [Chris]: Without making excuses, I have no idea if staffing levels are back to “normal” levels within the club but there hasn’t been a huge amount coming out of the club during the summer. The club shop is still not open (at the time of writing) and I’m not seen any plans to reopen yet.

Leading up to the new season always requires effective communication from the club, but after last season, it’s even more important they keep people up-to-date, so let’s hope it’s an area they can start getting right as things, hopefully get back to relative normality.


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With a huge game to come against Southampton, let’s give the Lasses maximum support!

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